A man who was arrested after he fatally assaulted a 57-year-old man in Harold’s Cross on Friday night was a former coach to UFC fighter Conor McGregor.
45-year-old Jonathan Dargan, who was a taekwondo coach to McGregor, punched Patrick Mullally, which caused him to fall and receive a head injury, which he later died from.
“Mr Dargan is legendary in taekwondo,” Irish taekwondo Union President Martin Fleming said. “He was very well experienced and should have known the assault would cause serious harm.”
He said that one of the tenets of taekwondo is self-control, which Jonathan Dargan would have been taught.
Conor McGregor, who lost to Nate Diaz in UFC 196 at the weekend, often trained with Mr Dargan in the Straight Blast Gym in Tallaght. Mr Dargan would have instructed McGregor in taekwondo kicking, according to Mr Fleming.
Mr Dargan is from Tallaght and has been a bouncer at Dublin nightclub Lillie’s Bordello for almost 20 years. It is understood that he has no previous convictions.
He was arrested and questioned in Terenure Garda Station in the early hours of Saturday morning. He was later released without charge.
Mr Dargan’s girlfriend was also questioned by Gardaí on the events of the night.
It is believed he got into a disagreement with a woman outside the Park View Court apartment complex in Harold’s Cross, which the victim tried to interrupt before being struck by Mr Dargan. Mr Mullally was taken by ambulance to St James’s Hospital, where he was later pronounced dead.
The incident occurred at about 4am on Saturday. Mr Mullally’s brother and sister also witnessed the attack.
“Unfortunately this isn’t the first time this kind of thing has happened,” Mr Fleming said. “There was a similar case with one of our own members, who was put in a coma after an altercation in the 90s.” He said that when alcohol is added to situations like this, self-control can be lost more easily.
Patrick Mullally came upon the altercation after his own retirement party on Saturday night. He was going back to a local pub when the assault happened. He hit his head off the kerb after a single punch from Mr Dargan. An autopsy was carried out yesterday morning.
“He was in the wrong place at the wrong time,” Mr Fleming said. “It could happen to anyone.”
Mr Mullally, who has one daughter, worked as a driver at the Guinness brewery for more than three decades and was celebrating his retirement before the assault occurred. It is believed he was from Terenure.